Diocese of Fort Worth

Bishop Iker meets with Archbishop Peter Akinola



On Tuesday, March 28, during a visit to the Metroplex, Archbishop Peter Akinola, the Bishop of Abuja, Anglican Primate of Nigeria, and leader of the Global South, met with Bishop Jack Leo Iker of the Diocese of Fort Worth. The two bishops had a very cordial visit and discussed a number of issues, including

• the upcoming General Convention of the Episcopal Church,

• the importance of the implementation of the Windsor Report,

• the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Panel of Reference, and

• the ministry to Nigerian Anglicans who reside in the United States.

The clergy of the Diocese of Fort Worth include two native Nigerians: Fr. Jonathan Ogujiofor of St. Simon’s, Fort Worth; and Fr. Felix Akinkugbe of St. Philip’s, Arlington. The congregation of St. Philip's is made up primarily of native Africans.

Below is the text of a letter Archbishop Akinola addressed to Bishop Iker following their meeting.

Province of Nigeria

THE CHURCH OF NIGERIA (Anglican Communion)

    Archbishop, Metropolitan and Primate of All Nigeria


March 30th, 2006

Bishop Jack Iker,
Diocese of Fort Worth

Dear Jack,

Grace and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

I am very grateful for our friendship and also for the time that we shared on Tuesday morning. I was greatly encouraged by your report and the faithfulness of the Diocese of Fort Worth. I am also most appreciative for the gracious hospitality that you have shown to Nigerian Anglicans during these challenging days.

As I indicated to you the brokenness in the Anglican Communion is a source of continuing anguish around the world – sadly the words that the Primates wrote in October 2003 regarding the consecration of the Bishop of New Hampshire have been and are being fulfilled, “this will tear the fabric of our Communion at its deepest level, and may lead to further division on this and further issues…”

As you know one consequence of this has been the isolation and alienation of a growing number of Nigerian and other Anglicans. In response to this the Church of Nigeria has established CANA (a Convocation for Anglicans in North America) to provide pastoral care for those Anglicans who are unable to find a spiritual home in the Episcopal Church during these difficult times. I was pleased to hear your enthusiastic support for this endeavor and especially gratified by your willingness to fully recognize and work in close partnership with the episcopal leadership that we expect to elect and consecrate in the coming months.

These are extraordinary times and I am pleased that we are able to continue our friendship and partnership in the work of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. You will be in my prayers this coming week as you meet with your fellow bishops to discern a way forward.


+Peter Abuja